There are troublesome winds blowing in our neighbouring municipalities.
We’ve long heard the proposals and opposition about industrial wind turbine projects in Mapleton. Now, North Perth has a major fight on its hands.
Until one’s community has been embroiled in a controversy such as this, one really can’t know what it’s like.
Invenergy Canada has proposed to construct a low-density, 23- to 27-wind turbine development in North Perth and neighbouring Perth East. Invenergy came into the community without much fanfare and began discreetly making deals with landowners. Once word began to spread, however, resistance soared, tempers flared and some who have signed contracts have regretted doing so. The wind developer has been met with fierce opposition, hostility and demands that it abort the project.
This issue has divided this peaceful, close-knit community – neighbour against neighbour, farmer against farmer, family members against family members.
Don’t think it couldn’t happen here. We bet those in North Perth thought they’d never see such a rift in their community either.
And what would we do if it ever did happen here?
Those who have been following the debate know there are no clear-cut answers regarding health concerns. They know there are those unsatisfied with Ontario’s government-mandated setback distances. There’s the fact that while municipal governments can express their opinion, they really have no final say on the situation. They know there remains much uncertainty, confusion and concern over industrial wind turbines. And they know that it possibly takes only one to touch the entire community, good or bad.
Building these windmills on one’s property is not the same as building a shed. It doesn’t just concern the landowner anymore – it can potentially affect the whole community.
To illustrate our point, we have opinions from two highly-educated gentlemen who are involved in the wind turbine debate and hold differing views. Dr. Jeff Aramini and Dr. Loren Knopper are both credible sources familiar with the subject and were recently published in the Listowel Banner:
“There’s no question in my mind there are direct health effects,” said Dr. Aramini. Meanwhile, “The way the province is regulating turbines, turbines won’t be related directly to adverse health effects,” said Dr. Knopper.
Knowing the way wind turbine proposal proceedings have transpired in the past, it would behoove all of us to realize we’re not immune to the controversy nor the fact that a wind developer could next set its sights on the Town of Minto.
Do we know where we stand?
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